Tuesday, August 17, 2021

Colbert and Meyers take closer looks at the Taliban taking over Afghanistan

Today is National Nonprofit Day, but beyond asking my readers to donate to their favorite nonprofit, I'm just not feeling it.* Instead, I'm examining a news event directly related to the description of the blog, the collapse of the Afghan government and its precipitous takeover by the Taliban. While I expected the eventual outcome, its swiftness shocked me so much that I have to process it through comedy. I begin with Stephen Colbert's monologue last night, Biden Faces Mounting Criticism As The Taliban Takes Control Of Afghanistan.

President Biden addressed the nation Monday afternoon to outline new goals for America's military mission in Afghanistan, as dramatic scenes of the Taliban's takeover of Kabul prompted harsh criticism of the president's withdrawal plan.
It only took a minute for Colbert to begin the comparisons to the fall of Saigon. At least that happened two years after the U.S. withdrew its troops and the South Vietnamese government and army put up a stiff fight the whole time. This time, the Afghan government and army gave up while the U.S. was still there, as President Biden pointed out. Frankly, I feel insulted, both by the Afghan government's (in)actions and the U.S. intelligence failure. I expressed what a waste of time, money, and lives the U.S. involvement in Afghanistan was ten years ago in We could have had the Moon, instead we get Afghanistan. Seeing this collapse a decade later demonstrates that I wasn't disgusted enough at the squandering of blood and treasure in "the Graveyard of Empires" at the time.

Colbert made two points as he closed out his monologue. First, our intervention in Afghanistan was a bipartisan failure of four administrations over 20 years. Second, there is nothing we can do about it in Afghanistan. Seth Meyers agreed with the first point but offered an alternative to the second in As US Withdraws from Afghanistan, Refugees Must Be Evacuated Immediately: A Closer Look.

Seth takes a closer look at the Taliban regaining control of Afghanistan as a 20 year foreign policy disaster that American officials from both parties bear responsibility for comes to a tragic end.
It took ten years for the U.S. to take out Osama bin Ladin and we stuck around for another decade. As for taking in Afghan refugees, that is another parallel to the fall of Saigon. The U.S. should at least accept the Afghans who worked for us and their families as refugees.

Seth closed by asking his viewers to donate to God's Love We Deliver. Just click the donate button at his video. That's one way of celebrating National Nonprofit Day.

*That's because I'm no longer a director of a nonprofit and that nonprofit is no longer an independent organization with its own fundraising. If my readers want to support the Coffee Party and its parent organization Bridge Alliance, they can become a Friend of Bridge, contributions to which are tax deductible. They can also donate to whichever member of Bridge Alliance strikes their fancy. There, that's the pitch.

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